Submitted by Simon Wickham
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Front country - easily accessible
Out and Back
Native bushBeachCoastalOpen farmlandsOpen ridges/tops
The Goldies portion of this route re-opened Nov 2018. Please be extremely vigilant with cleaning shoes and policing others.
If you start from the bridge you'll run a track and over a small hill to O'Neills Bay and the first big hill. This course (as per tcx file) assumes you start at the beach carpark. The Westcoaster event follows the same course except the black sand dune and private track at the end isn't listed here (save that misery for event day). Find the trail leading from the carpark and toilet block to the beach, you'll see a stream estuary and follow its edge down to the headland. Cross the stream and run to the dune ahead up and over into O'Neills Bay. Follow the beach until 3/4s along you'll see a track leading into the dune and grass and onto the first big climb (if you've started from the bridge the tracks meet up here in any case).
From here its up the first big hill (stop and take a pic of O'Neills Bay and the coast at the top its one of the best spots and Allan Ure and the crew from Photos4Sale will always have a phtoographer here on event day for good reason.) Follow your nose from here along the 9km or so of the Te Henga trail. Up and down some steep stuff on this spectacular coastal track with stunning views (if its full sun watch the exposure as there's next to no tree cover on this section) you will eventually find the track veers inland over a small hill across a paddock and on to the delightful Constable Rd stairs. These are a quad burner, pace yourself tiger.
Once at the top you'll meet up with Constable Rd, take a left turn and run down the gravel road about 1km and you'll see a little patch of bush (mainly manuka scrub) and an entrance to the little track that connects you with Golides Bush walkway (and the Mokoroa Stream & Mokoroa Falls Tk). This is a right hand turn and there's a toilet and kauri dieback wash station here. Spray the shoes and head downhill for just over a km to the Mokoroa Stream (turn right just before the swingbridge to get to the stream bed). From here you get a short loop but be warned the creek bed section of this loop is short but technical so expect this to be the longest 2-3km time wise in your life. It's basically a sort of track, sort of route up the Mokoroa Stream and a great route it is - this short loop is my #1 in the Waitakere's. Admire many small cascades a fantastic swimming hole and an all round gorgeous spot. Be warned - after or during heavy rain this creek can rise rapidly and whilst it has been done DOC don't recommend being here in these conditions (think water down the neck of your jacket type events happening - from personal dumb experience). You'll meander your way in and out of the stream and the small pieces of technical track to eventually get to the Mokoroa Falls. A spot where you cant go any further (take another pic or two) and spin back round and head downstream 200-300m keeping your eyes peeled for a track and set of stairs on your left (looking downstream). Take these up to the top and a short track left 100m or so takes you to the lookout over the falls. Again picture time. Turn around and head up this track avoiding any small inviting looking little detours left and right - head up the main track climbing to the signposted intersection where you take a right turn. This well groomed gravel track heads back down to the swingbridge you almost crossed earlier. Cross this and enjoy the 1.2km climb back to Constable Rd. turn left on Constable and retrace your steps back to Te Henga trail head and backonto the Te Henga trail. Whilst its an out and back section the views are totally worth it both ways. This time when you come down the last big hill into O'Neills Bay instead of heading onto the bech you can stay left and follow the trail across the dunes and grass areas to a short hill climb back in the bush and over the last hill (you'll know you've reached the top when you pass a telegraph pole - relief aye!!). Cruise down the track and when you get to the bottom of the hill head left through the paddock and eventually you'll cross a small footbridge and a car park and find yourself back at the one lane bridge you crossed driving in today. Turn right down the road to return to your car about a km away. Collapse and reflect on a really cool run and a mission accomplished. Check the ascent/descent (large) and the highest point (not that high) - that'll explain the leg burn your feeling.
There are currently no members to show for this trail.
Features of interest
Cliff Tops, Black Sand Beaches, Big Hills, Trans-Tasman Views, Bush loop, Stream scramble, Waterfall, Swimming hole
Make Up of Run
Untracked / Route only: 5%
Technical Single Track: 35%
Moderate Single Track: 30%
Easy Single Track: 25%
Gravel Road: 5%
Can start from two spots on Bethells Road:
1) the beach access car park (public toilets here) - this is the one shown on the map and course description
2) the Lake Wainamu car park (just over the one lane bridge at Bethells there's parking to the left or right of the bridge - the track starts on the right of the bridge if you are looking West)
No transport to here but safe enough parking and usually plenty of it unless it's the middle of a great summers day
Make navigation of this route super-easy by using the RunHunters app on your phone. View on RunHunters .
If you miss the turn off into Goldies and find yourself at the road T intersection with Constable Rd, Oaia Rd and Taiapa Rd don't panic, look to your left and you'll see the track leading to the start of Goldies Bush loop
Waterproof leggings, Thermal leggings, Short-sleeved thermal top, Long-sleeved thermal top, Seam-sealed waterproof jacket, Gloves, Beanie/thermal headwear, Personal Locator Beacon (PLB), Whistle, First aid kit, Extra food for emergencies, Survival bag, Survival blanket, Cellphone, Map.
Mokoroa Stream could be used (DOC recommend boiling all water if course), there isn't a hell of a lot elsewhere unless you are a seagull and can drink seawater. You could drive out to Constable Rd the day before and drop water at Te Henga / Goldies end or the halfway mark at Hormans Rd entrance to Goldies Bush and the Mokoroas Stream track (hide it in the bushes just in case some tidy kiwi picks it up and bins it)
Its exposed for much of the run so expect heat and sun to be a factor on a good day (I've see one poor lass choppered off here suffering heat stroke) and wet and cold winds (Sou-Westers) can make this a place where extra layers and a seam-sealed jacket are a must.
FYI - the trail is difficult to access by any other means than foot and I doubt stretchers are an option so being winched out by chopper is probably the only way out if you knacker yourself. Therefore spare the Westpac chaps the expense and take it easy.
Be warned (Goldies Bush/Mokoroa Stream) - after or during heavy rain this creek can rise rapidly and whilst it has been done DOC don't recommend being here in these conditions (think water down the neck of your jacket type events happening - from personal dumb experience).
Cliffs - if you fall from these you will make a hell of a mess of yourself and the rocks below which is a real pain in the butt for the rangers to have to clean up. Don't run this alone in high winds and take extreme care on a windy day - its a wild invigorating place but it has real risks especially if the wind is a howling offshore (easterly). It's usually a Westerly by the way.
The exposure is why I recommend the extra warm gear, on a good day with the right forecast you wont need half of it - but pack sunscreen and plenty of water.
Post run indulgence
Bethells cafe caravan (summer only)
You can beat a caravan at the beach (bring cash just in case). You'll find it parked during the day in the car park by the beach access and toilets. It's sweet treats will be well earned if you've just knocked this bugger off.
The Tasting Shed
Amazing award winning food - great outdoor setting. Expect a crowd in summer.
Whilst off the beaten track and a bit out of your way it is well worth the detour to savour fresh brewed craft beer, some tasty bites and the beer garden in summer will be overflowing (with people, not beer, that'd be a waste of really good beer). West Auckland institution - must do!
Sponsor this trail
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